The vast majority of divorces in Tennessee are filed using the grounds of “irreconcilable differences”. This type of divorce is what might be called a “no-fault divorce” in other states, as neither party needs to put any blame on the other for any sort of wrongdoing. In Tennessee, the couple will only have to show that differences have arisen and the parties are unable to work things out.
In cases where the divorce is going to be amicable or uncontested, this is the ground to use. The parties will need to negotiate and execute a marital dissolution agreement to divide their property. If there are children, the parties will need to execute a parenting plan, which sets a visitation schedule for the children.
A Tennessee family court can only award an irreconcilable differences divorce if the parties are able to agree on the division of property, custody, child support, and alimony. If the couple is having a hard time coming to an agreement, the court can help by sending the parties to mediation, where an experienced mediator will attempt to help the couple arrive at a mutually agreeable settlement.
Why is this so popular?
Helping the couple come to an agreement is desirable because the family law courts know that people have a tendency to follow a deal they helped create. The alternative is the added time and expense of a trial, where the judge will separate the property, decide how the parenting time will be divided, and likely leave both parties unhappy with the result. This tends to lead to additional trips to the courthouse.
It is important to have an experienced attorney who can advise you about your rights, represent you in the mediation, and properly draft the agreement which will be submitted to the court for approval. Your situation must be carefully analyzed in order to assure that your agreement is crafted in a way that won’t have unexpected results later.
I work with clients to help them through the process of ending their marriage and starting a new life. Contact me to find out how I can help you.